The Insane Origin Story:
The song that invented the sound, Marty Robbins' "Don't Worry," is a forgettable bit of weepy '50s country. All that matters is the solo, which accidentally fathered every single heavy guitar effect you've ever heard.
For the first 90 seconds, the song is typical gentle crooning about a lonely hearted cowboy being lonely. Feel free to listen to the whole thing if you require a sleep aid. If not, just skip ahead to the 90-second mark, when the lead guitar comes in and just rocks the hell out with a level of rawness unprecedented for the time:
That's pretty much the old-time country-western equivalent of Cannibal Corpse crashing a One Direction concert and taking over mid-song. And it was completely unintentional. That sudden burst of Satanism arose because guitarist Grady Martin (one of the least metal names ever) wanted to switch to bass for the song's solo. Audio engineer Glen Snoddy (the absolute least metal name ever) couldn't reinforce the recording console in time, and the rumbly bass ended up busting a key fuse. The result was the rock 'n' roll rumble you hear above.
The godfather of badass rock: a man so lame he needed his guitar to remind him who the fuck he was.